On Aug 25, 6:12 am, "Alberto G.Corona" <agocor...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Jul 5, 1:07 pm, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:> On 05 Jul 2011, 
> at 11:42, Alberto G.Corona wrote:
> >.
> > Are you sure you don't confuse consciousness and conscience. I think  
> > that solitary primitive animals felt pain, and are thus consciouss  
> > (although not necessarily self-conscious).
> Hi again
> Right
> Consicence may be a less sophisticated version of self-consciousness..
> I think honestly that all attemps of explaining conscience in terms of
> a certain degree of complexity or as a certain property of neurons or
> tissues goes the wrong path. Broadly speaking, this is like a medieval
> scientist trying to explain  a video game console in terms of the
> complexity and colourfulness of the printed circuits. These views
> ignores the work of the hardware designer that creates the machine and
> the programmer that make the algorithms.
> In living beings the work of the hardware designer and the programmer
> are done by a guy called Natural Selection. and this guy builds things
> for a purpose: Survival. What is conscience for? A self preserving
> being  with a central nervous system (an animal) must stablish a clear
> distinction between its body and the environment in order to preserve
> itself.  If he do not know the status of each of its parts in relation
> to the environment, he can not determine the priorities for self
> preservation: does he must avoid a predator? does he must eat
> something? etc. The effect of the activity set of all these central
> nervous systems is the conscience in the most basic manifestation.
> No degree of "complexity" or neuronal-like machinery will manifest
> conscience without the proper  algorithms (and the sensors-actuators
> too). As Theodosius Dobzhansky said: Nothing in Biology (and i
> suspect, nothing in anything) Makes Sense Except in the Light of
> Evolution.
> Honestly:
>   Alberto.

I think even evolution is only one half of the story, or the story
seen from only one side. Everything that conscience could provide in
terms of survival could be just as easily provided unconsciously.
There would be no need for the video game to have a graphic interface
and controller if you already have software that runs directly on the
hardware. I agree completely that complexity is the wrong direction to
go in, but in addition to the teleonomy of evolution, we routinely
participate teleologically in/as/through the universe.

Even if there were some evolutionary purpose served by feeling like we
are participating and making choices when we aren't, and for the
elaborately rich cornucopia of sensation and imagination we have
instant access to, evolution itself has no way to conjure 'experience'
out of inert material phenomena. It would be much more likely for
evolution to develop something like voluntary time travel or physical
omnipotence as a survival strategy then something like feeling which
totally defies conception in conventional physical terms.


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